Merry, Merry Christmas, Sweet Things

It is Christmas Eve morning and, for just a few minutes, all is still in my house. Keith is sleeping unusually late, Geli is nestled up on her bed (because a single degree under 80 is far too frigid for that whiny-baby German Shorthaired Pointer) and Star is outside chasing squirrels from the bird feeder. I slept late myself and have just finished my quiet time and my second cup of coffee. Things are about to rev up around here and I know the same is true for your household, or if you’re out of town, your family and hosts. I’m looking so forward to it. I dearly love this time of year. I’ll do much cooking today in preparation for tomorrow. I’m also having a little cooking class with Melissa this afternoon to teach her how to make a homemade pie crust.

You and I are delightfully comprised of all sorts of women: too young to be married, married, single, single again, and many widows. For those of us who are married, our husbands are the God-ordained head of our homes but, according to my man at least, the wife is largely the heart of the home. We often set the thermostat, so to speak. (Unless we’ve got a mean alcoholic husband who keeps the temperature enraged constantly. If that’s you, I’m so sorry and I will pray for God to deliver all of you to His great glory and by His tender mercies. I hope you are seeking solid, godly counseling and loving wisely. I just had to throw that in. I am an optimist by nature but I have not had the kind of life that lends itself to much naivete.)

I think this ability to set the thermostat of our gatherings is true for all of us women in many ways, married or single. Just watch and see if the temperature in our homes or apartments, and in many of our celebrations and among our friends these next few days is not set in large part by

our female tenderness,

our joy,

our willingness to overlook an offense,

our mood in serving,

our ecstasy in giving…and our enthusiasm over receiving.

Holidays are a LOT on a woman. I haven’t been sick in three years but I came down with a bad cold two days ago. Last night my sweet man hugged me and said, “Woman, you’ve been working too hard, writing, scurrying all over the place, then working on all of this.” He motioned with his expression to a lively, perhaps overly-decorated den, many presents, and a kitchen full of groceries for cooking. He couldn’t have been kinder and more sincere nor could he have offered to help more. Had he been none of those things, I would have wanted to say with considerable attitude, What was the other option? It’s got to all get done.

Yes, it does. We could all argue that we could down scale the whole thing and it would be easier and that’s absolutely true but that’s not liable to happen around here anytime soon. This is a family that loves celebrations and four lively generations engage at the drop of a hat. We thrive on it! But it is a LOT of work, isn’t it, Sister Friend?? And, it just occurred to me as I am writing this that the major reason I don’t delegate more of it is because I want to control all of it.

Ouch.

That was painful.

Let’s have a real live MERRY Christmas this year and at least quit stressing over all manner of thing that doesn’t even matter. There’s enough that does! Let’s get to it! I’ll pray for you and you pray for me that this will be our best Christmas celebration EVER. Let’s fire our inner Martyr Martha and let’s fire up the indwelling Spirit of the living Christ. Let’s serve lavishly and joyfully with a fresh awareness of His reigning presence in our homes as we celebrate His glorious advent. And then, let’s have guts to say to everybody at some point, “I’m going to take a nap! I love you guys and I’ll see you in an hour!”

We tried to think of a gift we could give all of you that might whisper to you how much you are loved here at LPM, a gift that might be used of God to encourage you this holiday season. This is a collection of things I’ve written and recorded around the Christmas theme and story. It’s not liable to be everybody’s taste but, for those of you who would like it, we want you to have it as a free download. Maybe you could listen to it while you cook or while you nestle up with a blanket for a few minutes by the fireplace.

 

 

If you’d like to have this free download, click on this link and then enter the Promotion Code: christmas2012

Once you enter your promotion code, you will see instructions on how to download each of the three sessions, Mary’s Reflections, A Country Christmas and The Shepherd’s Story.

Oh, mercy, Sisters, we love you so much. I love you so much. Stay in the light these next few days! We are blessed women indeed.

Merry Christmas.

 

 

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195 Responses to “Merry, Merry Christmas, Sweet Things”

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  1. 1
    Crickit says:

    Merry Christmas Beth to you and yours! May you have a wonderful Christmas Eve Day and a Blessed Christmas tomorrow! Thank you for your many hours of putting together all of your wonderful Bible Studies that have made us dive deeper into God’s word :)

    • 1.1
      Sarah Thrasher says:

      Beth,
      Thank you for saying exactly what I needed to hear. My mood was boardering on grumpy. It’s a lot that many of us women have on our plates, but the fact that God made us to be the thermostat for our homes is a task I will proudly uphold.

  2. 2
    Tara G. says:

    I have family in town and they’re staying a little longer than expected (like a week longer). I love them, but, you know… I have been doing just what you said, though, and slipping away each afternoon for some alone time and rest….and prayer.

    Thank you for the downloads! Have a blessed holiday celebrating God with us!!!

  3. 3
    Shelley says:

    Thank you for the downloads – Merry Christmas xx

  4. 4
    TraciG says:

    For the first time in a few years, I’m hosting Christmas Eve for my husband’s family, and Christmas Day with my sister’s family. Lots to do, so this reminder is perfect timing! It’s so easy to scurry and get things “perfect” at the expense of my kids’ enjoyment, and my husband’s joy. It’s much like with God, I can get so busy “doing” that I forget to just “be”… it’s the relationship (s) that matter!

  5. 5
    NurseRae says:

    This is precious! Merry Christmas to you too Mrs Beth!
    I am currently working today, but oh what a joy to be able to say “Merry Christmas Eve” to my patients and to see their faces light up!
    So looking forward to celebrating Christmast with ALL of my siblings this year–it’s going to be a blast!

    Merry Christmas Siestaville!!!

  6. 6
    Cary D says:

    Merry Christmas Beth and thank you for being such a gift to me and so many others ! You are loved !

  7. 7
    Betty Marschner says:

    Oh! dearest Beth,
    I have the stillness of this moment too. Family is up frying eggs!!! Why?? There will be feasting to no end for the next two days why not skimp on this breakfast???
    I just complained two days ago. If it were not for me around here—- There would be no nicely decorated tree all in white and blue this year. There would be no lights strung from beam to beam in this house!! There would be no presents under the tree, no baking! Never let it be said that we women are not the heart of the season you said it so well, Beth!
    I always get alittle teary eyed at this season. Just remembering– The girly chats we had Mom and I and Sis mashing potatoes on Christams Day as our men folk retired to watch mounds of food appear on the family dining table. Mom is celebrating her 18th Christmas with her Savior and Lord. Our family is forever torn apart over estate problems that saw me getting jailed on rediculous charges later dropped and I have since made amends with Sis and we are on speaking terms but do not get together on holidays any more. Sin kinda does things like that!
    We have chruch this afternoon no sleigh ride this year it is too cold. Our small ones have a short progam and we have a candle light service and a light supper if that is possible in rural settings! Then at seven we are home to open gifts etc and get ready for Christmas Day we are not sure if we will go out to a later service tonite or not. Our daughter comes home and she does a wicked pie crust. I have a pecan pie baking as I type! Makes me wonder what will our Christmases be like in glory some day? We will all be together. I am sure we will be able to talk freely with each other and will not be vying for attention as we are here on a one to one, as I believe our spirit will be whereever we wish it to be.
    I have not viewed your down loads but will when I get some breathing room! Maybe two days from today. I loved the Jesus the One and Only you did some years ago.
    Dear Beth,
    My He continue to bless you and yours as He has and will continue to. His love is all encompassing no matter what our past or future for that matter.
    Looking forward to seeing you in Souix Falls next Aug Lord willing!
    It is zero degrees in ND this am as if you cared to know!!! We had an inch of snow over night it is cold and my minischanuzer maned Ebony is scratching me with her paw and wants me to take the gooey (full of dog spit)toy to throw so she can retrieve sort of like your puppys! God love these four legged sweet hearts full of mischief!
    Bless you Dear! Rest! That is a wicked bug and can easily turn into pneumonia!
    Love you to death!
    Betty Marschner

  8. 8
    karen says:

    Merry, Merry Christmas to you also Beth! Thank you so much for everything, you have blessed me over and over in the last 12 years since I first did “A Woman’s Heart…” Blessings to you and your sweet family! :)

  9. 9
    Kimberly says:

    All praise to the Lord Jesus Christ!! Rejoice!! Rejoice!!!

    Thank you, thank you for this beautiful gift of drawing us into the manger of our Lord and Savior!! As I begin my day of celebrating His birth, there could be no better way to sharpen my gaze to what really matters!!!

    Praise you Lord!!

    Kimberly from northern Michigan

  10. 10
    Elvira says:

    Thank you so much Beth!!
    Have a blessed Christmas with your family and I’m praying for you!

  11. 11
    Selina says:

    Thank you so very much and a Merry Christmas to you and yours !!!!!

  12. 12
    Sarah says:

    Thank you, Siesta Mama! Sorry you are sick. Hope you feel better soon. On the boring drive from Dallas to The Woodlands, I listened to a message you gave in late 2003 on Psalm 37:4 about delighting in the Lord. It was such a blessing and I am committing to praying for the Lord to help me desire to delight in Him each day this year. I turn 40 this year and am neither a wife or a mother like I always dreamed I would be. The Lord has richly blessed me, but I still struggle with loneliness and wondering if He’s forgotten my dreams. But in listening to your message, I know my job is to delight in Him. Thank you for that. And I’m excited about SSMT for 2013. Merry Christmas, precious Mama, to you and your sweet family! :)

  13. 13
    Kortney says:

    Thanks Beth! Thanks for all the encouraging you give us. Merry Christmas!

  14. 14
    Michelle says:

    My busy soul needed this today. Merry Christmas Beth. Hope you feel better and you enjoy your time with your family.

  15. 15
    Tammy says:

    Merry Christmas to you and your sweet family Mama Beth. You are loved and I pray you have much joy and laughter and love as you celebrate Jesus…oh our sweet Jesus.
    love you much right back.

  16. 16
    Mary says:

    Merry Christmas Dear Beth,

    Wishing you a wonderful Christmas with your family and thank you for you.

    Mary

  17. 17
    Hannah says:

    Control is something that God is working on me with.It is a scary scary, probably more like terrifying thing when you surrender control to the only one who deserves it in the first place. But it is not fun or easy. I am right in thick of that battle right now, trying to surrender my “control” but continually finding that I have taken it back again.

  18. 18
    Renee says:

    Thank you so much for such a LOVELY Christmas gift :)

    I just listened to all three while making our Christmas cupcakes, & I might have shed a tear or three :) Merry, Merry Christmas to all of you at LPM (and your sweet families!)

  19. 19
    Siesta Susan says:

    Thank you so much for your gifts to us. It is so thoughtful of you and I will cherish all three. Merry Christmas!

    Susan

  20. 20
    tricia says:

    I always look forward to reading your blog, especially around the holidays. Thank you so much Beth. I am going to listen right now with my cup of cappuccino :) Merry Christmas to you and your family.

  21. 21
    d says:

    Thank you & Merry Christmas!

  22. 22
    Kara says:

    Merry Christmas to you and your whole family as well. I thank God for you always.

  23. 23
    Sharon J. says:

    Thank you Miss Beth! Praying for a blessed and joyful Christmas for you and yours and all my siesta friends!
    Love ya!
    Sharon :o)
    So happy Jesus came to earth! I can hardly stand myself!!!

  24. 24
    Mary G. says:

    Dearest Beth,
    Your loving kindness toward us never ceases to overwhelm me. You sure know how to brighten a girl’s day! I was forced to cancel my plans for Christmas Eve and type this from my bed because of illness. Bummer! If I don’t stay in bed I’ll wind up in the hospital so behave I must. Sigh. Looking on the blog today I was so happy to see you stopped by and then you even gave us a present! I’m so excited! I can’t wait to hear them! I know I’ll be blessed. Sending lots of prayer your way and all across Siestaville that all of your holidays will be blessed.

  25. 25
    Ashley Phelps says:

    Merry Christmas, sweet Siesta Momma. Big hugs to you and all of yours! <3

  26. 26
    Volleyball Ginger says:

    Merry Christmas to all of you Beth!

    Blessings,
    Ginger
    Wetumpka, AL

  27. 27
    Lynn Larson says:

    Thank you.

    Merry Christmas to you all!

  28. 28
    Stacey EMMOTT says:

    Thank you for such s thoughtful gift. Thank you to all the LPM Siestas who live Him so. You girls have impacted my life in turn u pray I am impacting the next generation in my life. Love to all

  29. 29
    Stacey EMMOTT says:

    Darn spell check. I meant love him and I pray big grin

  30. 30
    Ohlookaduck says:

    Thank you so much for the wonderful downloads, precious Beth!
    May you and your family be blessed this Christmas and forever.
    Love and hugs,
    Karen

  31. 31
    Mary Ellen says:

    Thank you Miss Beth!!! Merry Christmas!!!

  32. 32
    Ashlie McDonald says:

    Thank you so much Beth!!! Listened to the first two while I got ready for the day. I have been under the weather due to some personal issues, and not feeling the Christmas Spirit much, but this helped! God bless you all!
    Your sister,
    Ashlie

  33. 33
    elaine says:

    thank you Beth! what a treat! it’s a difficult, sad, lonely Christmas…. and these helped me refocus….. thank you so much!

  34. 34
    Elizabeth says:

    Thank you for the encouragement and reminder of where my priorities need to be this season. This came at just the right moment – truly heaven sent.

  35. 35

    Thank you Beth and Everyone at LPM for all you do to bless us during the year. The Christmas recordings are an extra special blessing as I make preparations in my own home for my family to gather here at Christmas. I will leave around three to make a last minute stop at the store and then pick up my mister from work. We will come home, shower and dress for an evening with his family before returning home to make more preparations for tomorrow. My family will arrive and our tiny home will be bursting at the seams with people galore. The trees are trimmed, the stockings hung. The presents are nearly wrapped and I am putting out the food for tomorrow’s meal preparations in just a few minutes. I have enjoyed having my oldest girl with me through most of the preparations and I am so glad we enjoy each other even if we do have a spat from time to time complete with tears and “I don’t like being mad at you…”

    It’s Christmas, and I’m blessed to know one more year to worship our Savior and celebrate the holiday that marks His birth.

    Blessings, M

  36. 36
    Sandy Bowers says:

    Thank you so much Beth. I asked you to remind me again….and you did. I boy do I need it. I have been passively moping around here, complaining in my head, “why do I have to do everything myself to get ready for Christmas?” As of this minute, I’m adjusting my attitude….and will work joyously and without complaint, even to myself.

    I love you for what you bring to this hurting world, and especially what you bring to our small sisterhood here on the blog.

    May you and yours have a very blessed Christmas…..if you haven’t yet received “Bibby’s Box” that I mailed to the office, you have a treat in store after you get back. (It was delivered on Thursday morning 12/20, so it is there for you.)

    Hugs to you!

  37. 37
    Mary Watkins says:

    Thank you!

  38. 38
    Pam says:

    Merry Christmas Beth..to you and your whole family. Love you… and your ministery.. Thank you for the download…

    Pam

  39. 39
    Emilee hall says:

    Merry Christmas to you Beth and every one else at LPM! I hope you have a blessed Christmas and get to feeling better soon! I am so looking forward to listening to the Christmas collection!
    And I cannot wait to see you at Passion! It is soo close :)
    Love you!

  40. 40

    Beth, It is so sweet of you to think of us on Christmas Eve day. Thank you for sharing your recorded thoughts on Christmas. I will savor listening to them when I find some quiet time. This has been a reflective Christmas season for me, so your gift will fit right in. For the first time, I have been reading Advent devotionals each day in December, and so I expect Christmas Day is going to be unusually spiritual and reflective for me. Isn’t it just like God to know that just what I needed in my reflections is a narrative from Mary’s and the shepherd’s point of view on that 1st Christmas? Thank you God, and Thank you, Beth

  41. 41
    Faye jones says:

    I too have been in the kitchen since early this Morning. Missing my mom as this is first Christmas without her . Have two brothers in a horrible battle with cancer. Younger than me. Hole in my heart. Look into their eyes and it is as if they too are wondering if this is our last Christmas together. I don’t like the sadness that brings. We try to laugh and be jolly when each sibling’s eyes cannot hide our true feelings. Then I pray for the moms and dads who have presents but no little hands to open them due to being shot down. Jesus I love you with all my heart and I know you understand and will grace me with peace that can only come from you and your Father ‘s promises.

    • 41.1
      Melissa says:

      Faye,
      I’m taking a moment to pray for you right now. May you expereince a special tangible sense of God’s presence and grace in your life. Your gentle spirit is a gift.

  42. 42
    Laura says:

    Merry Christmas Beth and Family (all of Living Proof included!!!) Hope your time together is special and have a happy and blessed New Year!!!!! I LOVED the Christmas devotions you gave us to listen to today…. especially MARY’S and THE SHEPHERD’S…..my daddy has written a couple of songs about Mary…. and it reminded me of them….. thank you for the beautiful words….. Laura in Mo.

  43. 43
    Theresa E says:

    Oh Beth! Your posts and teaching always speaks straight to my heart! Your comment about a mean alcoholic husband unfortunately applies to me right now though I KNOW God will one day give my husband salvation and set him free from this awful addiction. It will be for His Glory and in His timing.

    Thank you for your prayers and for the free download! I am looking forward to memorizing scripture with you this year and meeting you in January 2014 at the SSMT celebration!

    Merry Christmas to you and your family!

  44. 44
    Linda says:

    Thanks so much for the downloads. I am sure that I will enjoy them through out the rest of the Holidays. I pray that you and yours will have blessed and joyful Christmas. Thanks for taking the time during all or your business to remember all of your siestas. You are such a wonderful Siesta Moma. We love you so very much. May God continue to use you and your ministry through the coming year 2013 and until His blessed appearing.
    Love In Christ

  45. 45
    Pam in San diego says:

    Oh man, Beth, you couldn’t have spoken a more fitting word to me…I’ve already cried in the shower this morning, and almost while in the parking lot of the grocery store, when I couldn’t find a parking place. So I went to Starbucks (getting a gift card for my daughter who is in flight now) and got myself a Grande Skinny Peppermint Mocha, then went in my bedroom to read and pray, again…..seems like this year I have lost my Christmas spirit and want so much to enjoy the day and not miss one thing about the reason for the season. As soon as I hit “submit comment’, I’m going to listen to the download, thank you so much, Beth…..bless you on this day..Pam in San Diego

  46. 46
    Carla says:

    Thank you, Beth. Merry Christmas!
    Carla

  47. 47
    lynda rickey says:

    Thank you so much for the thoughtful gift and the great words of wisdom. May you and yours be blessed beyond measure in 2013. You are loved and I am indeed a very blessed woman! Happy birthday Jesus. Thanks for being the perfect gift.

  48. 48
    Eileen says:

    Thank you so much for these. I loved listening to them today while I did some last minute baking. Brought tears to my eyes.

  49. 49
    jhann says:

    Hi Beth, I’ve download your lessons, i’m off to cook an apple pie, I’ll be listen to you in my kitchen. I wish you and your family a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year. Thank you for all your work in your ministry it is a blessing to many. I will be praying for you. God Bless Dear one!

  50. 50
    Suzanne in RI says:

    Thanks so much! Have a Merry, Joyful, Wonderful, Excellent, Peaceful, Loving Christmas.

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